Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Animation Awards - Recognition for hard work

20 animated feature films were submitted for the Oscars
Part of the animation course at Southbank Institute of Technology involves animation field trips.

Despite Miyazaki advising animation students not to watch animation but to experience real life to inform their animation creativity, or words to that effect, the allure and appeal of animated feature films remains strong.

This post is spurred by the nominations for this year's Oscars. But before we skim across the surface of who has been nominated, I would like to point out that my deepest interest is in animated short films, where we get to see the interesting, wobbly cutting edge of the animation illness that infects our imaginations.

The Oscar list, they can only have 5, always appears a bit different when I compare it to the animated features I enjoyed: Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and Frog, The Secret of Kells (recommended by Terry and Cassie (if only the DVD had the correct zone, but thanks for lending it to me)), Up. Slap my wrist but I only got to see Coraline and Up, from that list to date and enjoyed both. Based on that, the Oscar should go to the first 15 minutes of Up, in my opinion. More research, more research... I love being an animator!

The Annie Awards are usually an interesting comparison, but this year have proved to disappoint in terms of providing some controversial difference: Coraline (again), Mr. Fox (again), Princess/Frog (again), Kells (again) and Up (again). But with the addition of Cloudy with the Chance of Meatballs.

So as an exercise, a few brain push ups, I tried to remember which animated feature films popped my imagination corn in 2009.

Here goes: 9 (disappointed after being excited about the short film), Cloudy with the Chance of Meatballs (twice; due to babysitting, not by choice), Coraline (I was suitably scared, needles and eyes = ERK!), Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (in Paris - good fun! The test of animation communication is to watch a film in a different language), Mary and Max (brilliant + tears), Monsters versus Aliens (lively and laugh out loud), Up (brilliant), Igor* (trained by one of the animators at summer school), Ponyo* (currently more wonderful than Disney - until I get to see Princess and Frog), Idiots and Angels* (at an Australian premiere with about 15 other people), The Tale of Despareaux*, Persepolis*, A Christmas Carol (I was not in the target audience), Waltz with Bashir*, Sita Sings the Blues*, Peter and the Wolf* (2008 Oscar winner - stop mo')... Whew, I think I've got memory cramp. (*2008, or earlier, release date)

And the nominations for Best Animated Feature Film in this year's Frank awards are:

  • Mary and Max

  • Ponyo

  • Coraline

  • Monsters Vs Aliens

  • Up

Ahhh, now I feel better. Sssstrrrretch and reaceeeeeach for the coffee.


The Loud One said...

haha, good idea Frank.I know the story was a bit lagging, but I'm still in love with scrag and scrag-et in Ice Age.

I can't wait to see fantastic mr fox (I can still remeber reading it from whoop-whoop ago) Princess and the Frog or Avatar...among others. :) If nothing else, last year was a bedazzlement of wonderful animation features. We can only hope for the same kind of content this year.

Maybe we should have a frank awards in class???

Frank said...

I think the sub-plot between the sloth and the baby T-Rex's was the heart of the movie.

The mammoths having a baby/calf and facing danger was a bit too cliche.

When you get a gig animating on a feature film manouvre yourself to animating the "sidekicks", they always have so much moore oompf!

Mr. Fox I think was OK, I found the animal animation at times annoying and, possibly, meant to be contrary to animation principles. The animation on the human characters, however, I hardly noticed. Now that is good animation.

Yes, we will have an award, I think. I have been incubating that idea egg for over a year and might hatch it this year.

Frank said...

The Princess and the Frog was so beautifully contrived. It had all the essential ingredients and heart string twangs. I enjoyed it.

Frank said...

Up, won the Oscar.

Frank said...

I got to see "Secret of the Kells" (finally) in May. Thanks to 1st year Scheree who leant me her DVD. It was as visually delicious as Avatar. All those patterns and designs based on illuminated books and early medieval tapestries. Beautiful. The ending seemed a bit rushed (story tempo-wise), however.